Take a quick tour of Pinterest and you’ll find that floral fairy gardens are all the rage this year. Try this creative ‘gardening on a smaller scale’ trend to re-energize your dish garden sales by adding a charming new line of fairy gardens and accessories to your summer collection. Fairies love flowers!
Fairy gardens celebrate the art of living tiny. This magical power of possibility thrives in simple places like recycled old watering cans, discarded toy wagons or oversized teacups. It brings out the kid in all of us.
While pinning some fairy favorites on Pinterest, I discovered helpful information by Janit Calvo on TwoGreenThumbs.com
. The author of two books, Gardening in Miniature
and Sophisticated Fairy Gardening
, Janit shared some insights and photos with us for creating elfin gardens of our own.
Fairy Garden or Miniature Garden
It sounds like fairy gardens and miniature gardens could be the same thing, but they’re not. When it comes to gardens of the wee people, the two terms are not interchangeable.
“The difference is in the realism,” Janit explains. “Miniature gardens are just that: in-scale gardens in miniature, like the July Fourth photo shown here. A fairy garden is much looser in concept: it can be just about anything at any scale and it may or may not have a fairy in it.”
Create a sense of wonder in your plant department by adding fairy gardens, houses and accessories to your product line. Use these five steps to introduce the fascinating spirit of sprites to your customers.
Choose themes that sell
Consider the hobbies, professions, sports teams and local interests of your customers as themes that will sell. Start by choosing a focal point that shares the message.
Create indoor and outdoor designs
Like any garden, the growing requirements of the plants and mosses you choose will determine where a design can be placed. Fairy gardens can be planted indoors and out.
Design outdoor gardens specifically for sun or shade. For indoor gardens, choose small flowering houseplants that adapt to lower levels of light. Consider how much sun, shade and water are needed for each type of garden. Provide the customer with a care and handling tag for each type of design.
Select a container
The first planting step is to find the perfect pot and fill it with soil. Be sure there are drain holes in your chosen container. Fairy garden ‘homes’ can be magically found in recycled round or oval tin buckets, your kid’s old red wagon, a large patio bowl, basket or even an old dresser drawer.
A wooden planter, clay or pottery pot works well, too. In fact, this is a great place to repurpose any leftover broken clay pots and trays. Use these bits and pieces to create a multi-tiered fairy palace complete with stair steps and layered gardens.
Fairy-friendly spaces can also be planned within a typical flower garden. Construct fairy gardens that sit atop old tree stumps, in unused chairs or on a birdbath. Fairies have been known to inhabit the base of a tree or a stack of stones as well. Give your inner child’s imagination free rein when it comes to creating spirited spaces.
Experiment with scale
This tiny world of enchantment has no rules. Have fun incorporating the elements’ proportion and scale into your designs. “Accessory size dictates scale,” says Janit. What looks tiny to us would seem enormous to fairies, so experiment with different sight lines. The TwoGreenThumbs.com
website offers a good video explaining this concept.
As with a larger garden, offer three heights of planting material including a ground cover, shrub and tree. A tree placed to the back of the design establishes height and defines the space. Shrubs add form to the area, creating dimension. Ground cover such as moss, pebbles or tiny pavers completes the scene as basing detail. Trim plants frequently to keep their desired size and shape.
Add creative accessories
Along with developing the landscape, be creative and design your own accessories for the mystical fairies and friends to enjoy.
OASIS Decorative Wire
work well for handcrafted furnishings. Tiny bicycles, swings, tables and chairs can be made from Metallic Wire
and Button Wire
. Benches, fences and gates can easily be fashioned from Flat Cane.
Soak Midollino Sticks
in water so they can be easily bent into whimsical shapes.
Want more ideas for how you can help attract mythical fairies and their masculine friends, elves and gnomes, to your customer’s garden?
Visit my Fairy Garden board pins for additional photos –pinterest.com/sharonmcgukin/fairy-gardens/